Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Abraham Lincoln: Rare Marine Corps Commission Signed by Lincoln and Gideon Welles as Navy Secretary. While naval commissions are recognized as many times scarcer than army appointments, how rare is a commission to the tiny Marine Corps! This significant document names John C. Harris as a "First Lieutenant in the Marine Corps." Harris was the nephew and namesake of former Marine Commandant John Harris. Accompanied by a 1998 letter to the family from then commandant General Krulok thanking them for the donation of Lieutenant Harris' Civil War sword to the Corps. He characterizes that gift as "the most significant acquisition we have received in years," and notes that, "Marine Corps items from the Civil War are extremely scarce." Additional reference material includes a photocopy image of Lieutenant Harris and details of his Civil War career, which includes his promotion for "gallant and meritorious services" in the attacks on Fort Jackson and St. Phillip in April, 1862. Beautiful condition. The ink in Lincoln's signature has turned evenly brown as is often the case with these Civil War commissions; however, the signature is bold and clean. We have handled several dozen Lincoln-signed commissions over the years, but this is the first Marine example. 15" x 19", elegantly custom framed to 22.5" x 27.5".

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    March, 2008
    1st Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 6,997

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 April 17 Featuring the Michael Ward Collection Americana & Political Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    You reach a customer base that is in many ways completely unknown to the major auction houses, and your marketing to this base is as professional as one could hope for. As I continue to wind down my holdings.
    Michael Z.,
    Hawthorne, NY
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search